Incompetent Former Broward County Sheriff Still Trying to Get His Job Back

scott israel

Former Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

From the Associated Press:

The Florida sheriff who oversaw the response to the Parkland school shooting is fighting for his job in front of state lawmakers.

Suspended Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel testified Tuesday during a state Senate hearing.

Gov. Ron DeSantis suspended Israel three days after taking office in January, saying the response to the Parkland massacre showed incompetence and neglect of duty. But Israel says neither was true, bristling at the notion that anyone would call him incompetent or negligent.

Israel also rejected claims that he was to blame for the chaos that broke out after a shooting at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood airport in 2017. He says he is proud of how law enforcement responded to the situation and said chaos is inevitable when there are “20,000 people running haphazardly.”

Israel will continue testifying today.

A lawyer says Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ decision to suspend the sheriff who oversaw the response to the Parkland school shooting was a knee-jerk reaction based on politics.

Those comments came Tuesday at the beginning of a Senate hearing as Scott Israel fights his suspension as Broward County sheriff.

Israel’s lawyer, Benedict Kuehne, said DeSantis promised to remove Israel even before he was elected in November and did so before the state’s top law enforcement agency finished investigating the response to the February 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that left 17 dead.

DeSantis’ lawyer, Nicholas Primrose, said Israel failed to properly train deputies for active shooting situations. Primrose said 13 months earlier the department’s response to a shooting at a Fort Lauderdale airport led to chaos. That shooting left five dead.

comments

  1. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

    Some people just don’t know when to go home.

    1. avatar Mlee says:

      You can’t hardly blame him for trying. He went from a top cop somebody to an unemployed hated nobody who is out of $100,000+ a year pay check with little prospects of landing another top cop job ANYWHERE in the United States. Much of the time an experienced officer who gets in trouble at his dept. can quietly move on to another dept with little trouble. With the toxic name Scott Israel and his age, he essentially up the creek without a paddle. I personally don’t give a flying bat shit about the guy, I just can’t blame him for trying.

      1. avatar Kyle says:

        out here in CA, security guard companies are hiring. 16.00/hour. I’m sure his stance on firearms will make him a shoe-in for upper management in now time in the golden state.

      2. avatar Sgt Bill says:

        He should become a school teacher in a school that doesn’t allow firearms

        1. avatar MLee says:

          Good luck at his age of 62 of becoming a school teacher. H

      3. avatar JMJM says:

        I would expect no less. “He says he is proud of how law enforcement responded to the situation.” That statement right there should be enough to keep him out. He can find a job at any of the fine, fast food establishments that sell chicken. He’d be a great spokesperson.

      4. avatar Free Helicopter Rides For Commies says:

        Well the Broward Coward can kiss our collective ass, I’m GLAD for one that he’s out, and I don’t even LIVE in Florida!! This toxic cop is a CLOSE personal friend of Hitlery Clinton, and carried water for her on far too many occasions! The connection to Killary is all I need to know that’s he’s a POS, even without bringing up the fact that he’s not a good Sheriff!!

    2. avatar Cpt. Obvious says:

      Oh, it’s important that he gets back behind his badge. All the truckloads of falsified state and federal votes, tabulated in locked buildings, for a week after elections have ended, in his jurisdiction aren’t going to backstop and stand-down Themselves.

    3. avatar frank speak says:

      no way he returns…PEOPLE DIED as a result of his incompetence…can’t lose sight of that…

    4. avatar PATRON49IFT says:

      Agree, he should be hanging his head in shame not crowing about what a good job he did. Just shut up and go away already.

      1. avatar Wood says:

        He should be in stocks in the town square where the people can throw garbage and offal on him. Then run out of town on a rail.

  2. avatar The Crimson Pirate says:

    So how many other sheriff’s or police around the country have been fired or suspended for their handling of mass shootings or other mass casualty events. Some of them have been real fluster clucks, but I don’t recall any other suspensions or firings.

    To me this was clearly political.

    1. avatar Andrew Lias says:

      I would actually argue the people NOT getting fired is political.

      1. avatar Geoff “Guns. Lots of guns.” PR says:

        *Fist-Bump*…

        1. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

          Yup.

      2. avatar The Huscarl says:

        AMEN! Loss of life due to clear negligence by leadership should see the leadership hanged at the same place and time as the perp.

      3. avatar Ed Schrade says:

        He also did not see that his deputies received the proper training for shootings like the other police departments were getting, this translates into incompetence.

    2. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      Yes. Scott Israel is as much a victim as the students his “officers” failed to protect. //sarc//

      1. avatar LazrBeam says:

        My ex-son-in-law is also named Scott and is a certified idiot. I wonder, could it be that given name is a lifelong pox on the person? That would appear to be the case in these two instances.

    3. avatar Chicago Steve says:

      A few things sets this apart from other incidents.

      1. Broward County received a lot of warnings about this guy and did nothing. (over 45 calls in less then 10 years, plus other warnings).

      2. He lied about some of the above warnings and failed to take any responsibility for the confusion that day and objectively bad training and orders. He lied to the public about the policies of the sheriff’s office at the time of the incident. His lying to the public is supported by ample evidence and not in dispute.

      3. The sheriff’s organization overwhelmingly voted no confidence in him. That should speak volumes. They know more about what happened and what’s going on than us internet folk ever will.

      1. avatar Ardent says:

        Well said, but it goes deeper than that. His agency, at his behest, entered into an illegal agreement with the schools to not arrest or cite student offenders who were clearly in violation of the law, often serious violations, and often violent. This was to both improve the ratings of the schools by lowering their rate of criminality and artificially improve the graduate to incarcerate ratio that they are graded on. At the same time it artificially lowered the crime rate in the county, benefiting his reelection campaign.

        This sort of arrangement is typical in schools with large percentages of African American students, as there is considerable pressure to do something about the fact that in many locales black male students are statistically more likely to be incarcerated than to graduate.

        As such the student population remain in contact with habitual, and often violent, felons who would otherwise be either housed in juvenile detention facilities, or state prisons. The result is a much higher rate of victimization of these student populations (which can lead to violent outbursts by the victims), no criminal record keeping of the felonies committed by students (which can lead to their passing a NICS check and acquiring firearms, a la Cruz) and under sentencing of offenders who are in fact violent, repeat offenders but who artificially appear to be first offenders. Such arrangements, in failing to penalize criminal behavior can encourage such behavior in otherwise disinclined students while emboldening habitual offenders to do so more frequently, and in more profound ways. These unlawful and insidious arrangements create massive criminality problems on campus and mislead youthful offenders into a false belief that they can continue their criminal behavior unpunished after graduation. They also subject law abiding students to unnecessarily high levels of crime, violence and risk, while also disheartening them as their abusers go unpunished. It’s no struggle to see how this drives membership in gangs for protection. As part of the cycle, the schools involved artificially appear not to have a crime problem, meaning no efforts are made at alleviating the criminal issues they have.

        In the final analysis the schools benefit on paper, the police benefit on paper, the offenders benefit by being served a population to prey on without consequence, and the law abiding students and society suffer terribly.

        The above alone is reason enough to send the sheriff to prison rather than back into office. Now add in the poor training, outrageous lies and other missteps and failures that lead to 17 deaths and be astounded at the sheer audacity of this man.

        There ought to be a criminal case brought against him for knowingly and purposefully, for his own gain, ignoring a plethora of criminal acts by the students of the schools within his jurisdiction. Likewise the administration of these schools ought to be held civilly and criminally liable for their role in intentionally misrepresenting the crime level on campus and abetting the criminal students by conspiring with the sheriff to ensure they never faced penalties for their crimes.

        Once it’s done in Broward, let’s move to get it done in every other jurisdiction in which school administration and law enforcement conspire to deceive the public, parents and judicial system by failing to report or make arrests in serious criminal cases involving students.

        1. avatar Wyantry says:

          BRAVO! +10

      2. avatar G. W. says:

        Your point:
        1> I believe the FBI received most if not all of those reports and did nothing. One has to commit a crime before law enforcement can get involved. We have a Constitution that protects us from such activities.
        2> He lied about some of the warnings, Please expound on which ones.
        3>The sheriff’s organization overwhelmingly voted no confidence in him. Please post the results of that vote.

        I believe the SCOTUS has ruled, on more than one occasion, that law enforcement in the US has no legal requirement to protect the lives and rights of its Citizenry. The Judge dismissed the charges against the one deputy that was sued for not taking action.

        Now for my opinion, I think the Governor should have suspended him.
        that was sued

    4. avatar Chip in Florida says:

      “..So how many other sheriff’s or police around the country have been fired or suspended for their handling of mass shootings or other mass casualty events. ”

      How many of them did as poor a job of it as Scott Isreal?

      Yes, his removal was political. It was ALSO done with cause.

    5. avatar AKSP says:

      Sometimes politics and justice coincide.

  3. avatar Ogre says:

    Israel will probably get his job back on a legal technicality, given all the legal eagles that are elected to the legislatures and Congress these days, and the fact that he has one representing him in this matter. Just for information, what party controls the Florida senate these days? If it’s the Dems, the sheriff will get reinstated.

    1. avatar Roger J says:

      Republicans

  4. avatar LKB says:

    I just hope that at least one of the Senators has the stones to examine him under oath about that fishy pre-shooting deal where Israel’s son (while a Parkland HS student) got a slap on the wrist rather than a felony sexual assault charge, thanks to the actions of the Broward Coward Peterson.

    And also why (other than political correctness or cronyism) he thought it was a good idea to appoint Jan Jordan to be a district commander (as documented in the after action reports, she totally froze up when in command of the Parkland response), when it appears she had no particular LE management/command skills beyond supervising the service of subpoenas.

  5. avatar Jim from LI says:

    I believe he’s being made a scapegoat. Is having a crystal ball with which one detects whether a deputy is going to perform or chicken out a job requirement? Should the sheriff have instituted “How not to be a coward” training? As far as the airport incident, I cannot see how an active shooter situation could have resulted in anything but chaos.

    1. avatar tdiinva says:

      In the Military the Commander bears the responsibility for failure. If the police want to act like they are paramilitary they should live by the same rules.

      1. avatar Viejo Torro says:

        This!

    2. avatar LKB says:

      It’s a lot more than that.

      Why was Peterson handled with kid gloves until the heat got too hot? And did that have anything to do with the solid Peterson did a while back for Israel’s son? See https://www.realclearinvestigations.com/articles/2018/12/31/the_sheriff_the_sheriffs_son_and_the_coward_of_broward.html for the backstory here.)

      Why did Israel appoint Jan Jordan to be a district commander? (By all accounts, she was woefully unqualified for her position, and this showed when she botched the command of the scene.)

      Why did the rank and file of the BCSD loudly express a vote of “no confidence” in Israel?

      And, of course, why was he loudly and publicly blaming the NRA for his own department’s incompetence?

    3. avatar The Accountant says:

      Is it Jim from Li, or Scott from Broward?

      So rarely does hubris filled fools like Israel ever face accountability for their incompetence, that this a welcome and needed change.

      I can only guess “jim from li” …but… birds of a feather…

      1. avatar Jim from LI says:

        Look, some of you have obviously been following this story a lot closer than I. You can point out the facts I may have overlooked in a civil manner and add to the conversation/debate like an adult, or you can fire off a snotty, childish ad hominem attack. Looking at you, accountant.

    4. avatar Ardent says:

      Pure B.S.. not only did Israel not deal with Pederson until he was forced to by media, had his department had the proper active shooter training and standing orders they would have entered immediately to confront, as is the standard in every department in the US, with the apparent exception of the Broward Co. Sheriffs Dept. In this bizzare exception, Israel actually said he didn’t want his deputies to go into such a situation until they had absolute superiority.

      Further more, BCSD had some 40 contacts with Cruz prior to the mass shooting, including for several violent offences, and several felonies. Due to the BCSDs unlawful and unconscionable agreement with the schools district not to arrest students for crimes committed (to avoid showing the violence and criminality problem within the school system and in order to make them look better on the graduation vs incarceration percentage they’re graded on) Cruz was free to own fire arms and free to walk about shooting people when he should have been both a convicted felon and currently incarcerated.

      It pays to know what you’re talking about when you post here. Many of us do, and won’t hesitate to confront ill informed opinions lacking in evidence when presented.

    5. avatar Chuck in IL says:

      It goes WAY deeper than the coward deputy. The incompetence that even I know about is enough to fire the man.

    6. avatar GS650G says:

      The CYA exhibited by Sheriff Israel was nothing short of disgraceful. His CNN ranting about guns being the problem was a huge deflection attempt. And when you’re the top guy you are responsible for the policy and actions of those below you.

  6. avatar Mad says:

    You run to the sound s of guns he didn’t

    1. avatar Ranger Rick says:

      Scotty Boy ran to the TV cameras, that was his true calling in life.

  7. avatar disillusioned says:

    Wasn’t Israel spouting off in his uniform on that anti-gun CNN townhall propaganda session a while back? (Guess I’ll look it up).

    1. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      Have you ever noticed how much many sheriff’s uniforms always seem to be something out of a bad comic opera? To see some political bozo strutting around with the stars of a military general on his shoulder always seems a bit insulting.

  8. avatar Chris T in KY says:

    The former Florida sheriff Scott Israel is a drug addict. His drug of choice is power. And he lost that power. Now he is going through withdrawal symptoms. Like most drug addicts he needs to go to prison. Because he can’t get what he wants while in prison.

  9. avatar Timothy Toroian says:

    He’d better go away. The pros and antis both must want his hide on a barn door.

  10. avatar Joe says:

    Knowing how damned dumb this country has gotten, the Broward Coward will probably get his job back-and with a raise, too.

  11. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

    let the parents decide his fate.

  12. avatar Imayeti says:

    Slow learner!

  13. avatar Ralph says:

    Why doesn’t he just get a job as Nancy Pelosi’s bodyguard?

    1. avatar Chuck in IL says:

      That’s the kind of job he will end up with.

  14. avatar strych9 says:

    Really it’s not the response to the incident that screwed him. No one is going to hold him responsible for a coward in the ranks or a poor response to an admittedly chaotic situation.

    It’s his response to that response that fucked him. If he had said, effectively, “Mistakes were made and we’re going to make damb sure they are not repeated” he’d still be employed.

    It was his “How dare you question my authority” reaction combined with his overtly political attacks on everyone outside his department that got him nailed to a cross.

    1. avatar Tim says:

      A good leader does accept the responsibility of their subordinates and of their actions. If their subordinates are not up to standards, they should have been identified and replaced.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        That’s kinda my point. He didn’t, likely, know the guy was a total coward until this happened.

        As such I don’t hold Israel accountable for not knowing the soul of every person in the Department. I hold him responsible for not taking charge once it was made abundantly clear what and where the problems were.

        1. avatar edward kenway's ghost says:

          Israel knew what sort of people he was hiring.
          One of them was Deputy Nezar Hamze, a CAIR activist. Hamze failed multiple polygraph tests but still got hired. It is alleged this same deputy had a relative in the family who was arrested while trying to flee the country after killing a woman during a hit-and-run. Same Deputy Hamze who sent his daughter to military school, provoking a media circus over getting her being denied for wearing Islamic garb while in uniform. The daughter eventually enrolled in a more accommodating school (Norwich, VT) and withdrew, failing to graduate as a military cadet. No big loss there.
          Israel himself is threat to public safety and so are his deputies.

    2. avatar Ardent says:

      I think people who know that in spite of currently accepted active shooter policy Israel specifically changed the wording of the BCSOs policy to read a deputy “may” immediately enter…where as the boilerplate policy, current policy for every major LE organization in the US reads a deputy “must” …
      might not be inclined to accept that the former sheriff isn’t personally responsible.

      Then, given his agencies 40 plus contacts with Cruz, some felonies, some violent, with no arrests, and his initial defense of Peterson, and his defense of BCSOs response, until neither was tenable, and his assertion that he had given inspired leadership throughout the incident…

      There is just a point where the guy is so damn awful that there is no defending him. He did tjis to himself, and I can’t even imagine a saving grace.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        I don’t think there’s a problem with that wording at all. It accepts nuance and the inability to know the future and thereby allows for the LEO’s the freedom to make the, hopefully, right call based on circumstance rather than feel they have to follow a written set of rules that don’t match the situation in front of them.

        No one wants the cops on scene to make a bad call because of doctrine and, for example, charge headlong into a situation knowing that they’re likely going to cause another Beslan.

        Flexibility opens us up to possible mistakes by the people on the ground but inflexibility locks us into a course of action before we know the situation. As Mattis, channeling Oscar Wilde, pointed out: “Doctrine is the last refuge of the unimaginative”.

        1. avatar Ardent says:

          In principle I don’t disagree with you. I also don’t want to send cops piecemeal into a situation which merely serves to get them killed. That said, the policy, as written, allows for such judgement calls, yet still implores officers to move to confront, since generally speaking the mass murder stops when armed confrontation begins.

          The point I’m attempting to make is that Israel specifically intervened to alter the language of the adopted policy while sheriffs and chiefs of police everywhere saw fit to enact it as written. Then, on his watch, his deputies failed to enter and confront, even trying to keep other responding agencies from entering, until a local police departments officers defied this and entered.

          This is in light of there being no report of multiple shooters or an organized attack, the sorts of things Isreal was arguing would damn officers to death with the must enter language.

          Then he doubled down in support of his decision even when it was plain that it had resulted in unnecessary victims. Then he supported the SRO, Peterson, who I think anyone would justly rule a coward in dereliction of his duty.

          Couple this with Israel’s claims of “exemplary leadership” and the abject failure of his department regarding the shooter before and after the event, and it seems very plain to me that he is rightly vilified.

          If his collision with school officials to not make arrests and charge students plainly guilty of serious offenses is ever proven (the evidence abounds) Israel will be very lucky not to end up imprisoned.

          To suggest such an official is unfairly targeted is to ignore the preponderance of evidence against him.

          I’m a rule of law kind of guy, but Isreal is sufficiently inept and corrupt that the method by which he falls isn’t terribly important to me, he just needs to go .

          Sometimes, when removing inept , evil or dysfunctional political animals from their positions it is necessary to impune them for the one thing you can get them for, rather that the more justice satisfying thing they really ought to face. Let’s not allow the nature of politics to stop the public from replacing those who clearly and dearly need it because the means aren’t so very clear.

          Ex sheriff Scott Isreal is so clearly a bad sheriff and a bad politician that any means which results in his down fall are almost certainly good means. While I don’t hold that the ends always justify the means, this fellow is without a redeeming trait, is likely criminally liable in a variety of ways, and cannot possibly be argued to be a boon to the agency or public he was sworn to serve.

          In evidence of this, his own deputies gave him a vote of no confidence, and the MSD shooting commissions report damned him thoroughly.

          I generally agree with you STRYCH9, but in this I believe you are thoroughly incorrect.

  15. avatar Texican says:

    He really should be tried for willfully allowing this shooting to happen. I hope they dig deep and wide and find out everything about this so-called man. Then they can prosecute him and send him to prison. Maybe then he’ll have a “come to Jesus” revelation and beg forgiveness from all the parents and loved ones of those who died needlessly under his pathetic “leadership.” He wouldn’t know true leadership if it kicked him.

  16. avatar lefty says:

    He should be fired,lose any pension/benefits,never be eligible to work in any government capacity, imprisoned.
    Reminds me of the incompetent gutless NYC Transit Police in the 1950s/60s.They were armed,we weren’t allowed to be,and they ran away from any rumble in the trains.
    SOSO

  17. avatar James W Crawford says:

    Perhaps this would be an opportunity to discuss the policies that enabled Sheriff Israel’s son to not be prosecuted for participating in a gang assault in which an attempt was made to sodomize the victim with a baseball bat?

  18. avatar joefoam says:

    His holier than thou trashing of the NRA in general and Dana Loesch specifically during that circus ‘townhall’ deflecting all of the blame for the shooting tells you what kind of a scumbag the guy is. he is a political hack who should be run out of town on a rail.

    1. avatar Southern Cross says:

      You forgot the tar and feather first.

  19. avatar Alan says:

    Given that it’s likely well paid, with lots of benefits and power too, is anyone surprised at his efforts to reclaim the job?

  20. He is just showing all how a liberal operates

  21. avatar GS650G says:

    There is always a gig as talking head on CNN. They love him,.

  22. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

    I’m no fan of this sheriff. That being said, how exactly does one elected official ‘fire’ another elected official? Does this mean that Trump can fire Pelosi?

  23. avatar Jim Bullock says:

    Sheriff Lyin in the news keeps some other things front n center: — feds imposed the systematic non-response,
    — cops aren’t required to protect you,
    — gun free zones are shooting galleries for whack jobs,
    — the people of that county n school district wanted all that
    — n got what they wanted, including their Sheriff
    — it took the governor to start straihhtening out the mess
    — the “hero” of all this is heil-posing little hoagie, neither the polite (Jewish, AIR?) kid they kept out of Harvard nor the folks who ran into the danger to help, and did.

    It will just go on…
    Sheriff Lyin, there, thinks he did nothing wrong. He thinks his job is smug-affirming reality T V like that WWE “town hall.” There’s good guys, n bad guys, n the point is the frission(?sp?) of fake conflict without the risk or anything real.

    He’s gonna fight back, not accept responsibility.

    The good news is that with each round of flailing, another layer of failure n corruption will get exposed. And keeping flailing will keep the issues alive.

    There won’t be any one, mass convetsion, but the drip, dripm erodes the edifice a little with each drop. Like the Travon Martin case, yes it will be a shallow rallying point — it was gonna be anyway. But, it will also be a fact-based part of the debate for some. That wasn’t gonna happen w/o the publicity.

    Of course the “Ban all the things!” people will be on about what they’re always on about. But, also: “We need to red flag report dangerous people!” “Um, so yr gonna handle this gun red flag thing as well as all the red flags on that guy you’re talking about who shot up a school?”

    “Banning” something from people they don’t like is expedient. The rest is noise. Sheriff Lyin front and center illustrates this.

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